- Monday, 22 February 2016
Animal Liberation NSW, an Australian animal rights group dedicated to ending the suffering of exploited or confined animals, together with Aussie Farms, has today released hidden camera footage capturing what happens behind closed doors in Australian intensive farms.
Yelmah Piggery is a 450 sow breeder facility located near Hamley Bridge, South Australia. The footage from hidden cameras in 2015 and 2016 revealed the following:
- Workers hitting/smacking/kicking pigs and piglets, riding around on sows
- Workers artificially inseminating female pigs with tubes of semen
- Throwing piglets
- Cutting piglets' ears and teeth without pain relief
In addition, investigators found large numbers of sick/injured and dead piglets, some in pieces after being eaten by a large population of wild cats. Any pig who becomes too weak to continue breeding is killed on site and dumped to rot on a large outdoor compost pile with numerous other carcasses. Other pigs were forced to live in their own waste in small concrete "group housing" pens.
One sow had fallen or been pushed into the waste tunnel underneath the pens, living in urine and faeces without food or water. The next night her condition had deteriorated and it was clear that no attempt had been made to get her out. Investigators contacted the RSPCA who were able to do so.
Many of the issues seen at Yelmah are representative of wider systemic problems in the industry, where as soon as pigs are viewed as nothing more than commodities, it becomes easy to abuse and disrespect them. Compared to other pig farms in Australia, Yelmah ticks more "animal welfare" boxes in that there are no sow stalls, and no tail cutting of piglets - yet there is clearly nothing ethical or humane about it.